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Faculty Spotlight on Dusty Sweet

July 17, 2015

Dustin Sweet  
Dusty Sweet, Wildwood's new assistant professor
of economics and statistics

Dusty Sweet, Ph.D., isn't new to St. Louis Community College. In fact, he's served as an adjunct professor at Wildwood since the campus opened in 2007. Beginning this fall, however, he will join the ranks of the full-time faculty, serving as Wildwood's new assistant professor of economics and statistics.

"Wildwood is a great place to teach, and I'm excited to move into this role at the college," Sweet said. "I enjoy working with our students, and I truly appreciate their willingness to engage in classroom discussions because it makes the learning process more fun."

Sweet grew up playing golf in Casey, Illinois. His love of the game led him to pursue a management degree at Eastern Illinois. His plan was to graduate and become a golf course manager.

During his sophomore year, his plans changed when he met a farsighted professor who suggested he add a second major in economics. Heeding his professor's advice, he loaded up on economics courses and ended up graduating with a double major.

From there, he went on to earn a master's and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Missouri, Columbia. His dissertation focused on economic and statistical theories as they relate to unemployment trends.

While Sweet has a passion for economics and statistics, he realizes that students don't always share his enthusiasm. To overcome this, he has made it his mission to show students two things: that these topics aren't scary and that they have real-world applications.

"Economics and statistics are data-driven, and data is used in everything we do; from computer apps to professional sports," he explained. "As a professor, I'm committed to helping my students understand why economics and stats are important and how they relate to their jobs and interests."

When he's not teaching, he stays active by playing as much golf as he can and running four to five times a week. He plans to compete in his first marathon, the Go! St. Louis, in the spring.